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Opening day of the Oak Park Farmers Market is still three weeks away but the three-year-old market is already tempting me with at least three reasons to switch my farmers market shopping day from Sunday to Saturday starting May 5.
Reason 1: Site improvements. The market site in McClatchy Park at 35th St. and 5th Ave. has been spruced up for its 2012 opening, with improvements like concrete walkways, granite paving for vendor stalls, landscaping, shade trees and benches.
Reason 2: Dollar-for-dollar food stamp match. Market customers can use their EBT cards to purchase tokens that are redeemable for purchases from market vendors. Thanks to a contribution from Rabobank, the farm-friendly lending institution, the Oak Park Farmers Market will once again double EBT customers' token purchases.
Chef Brad Cecchi of The Grange Restaurant in downtown Sacramento has created a porked-out smorgasbord based on Jubilee Farm Berkshire pigs, plus a few farm-fresh chickens cooked inside a pig. Here's the menu, including a local bacony donut for dessert:
The menu notes, but doesn't specify, a vegetarian option.
All of the vegetables in Cecchi's menu will be sourced from local farms and farmers represented at the Oak Park Farmers Market.
The dessert course is the Bacon Maple Doughnut by Southside Park's Doughbot Doughnuts.
Beverages are local, too, including bottled-in-Oak Park Coca-Cola provided by Sacramento Coke Bottling Company, and apple cider from Barsoti Family Juice Co. of Apple Hill.
The Roasted Pig Lunch begins at 1 p.m. May 12 at the Oak Park Farmers Market at McClatchy Park, 35th St. and 5th Ave. Live music and activities for kids are planned.
Tickets are $25. $50 VIP tickets include a gift basket of local fruit, vegetables and jams, plus charcuterie and bacon jam prepared by Cecchi, winner of the recent Sacramento Bacon Fest.
Proceeds benefit the Oak Park Farmers Market.